Monday, October 26, 2009
Ryznar and Stępień-Sporek: "To Have and to Hold, for Richer or Richer: Premarital Agreements in the Comparative Context"
Margaret Ryznar (yours truly, in the interest of disclosure) and Anna Stępień-Sporek (University of Gdańsk) have posted To Have and to Hold, for Richer or Richer: Premarital Agreements in the Comparative Context, 13 Chapman Law Review__(2010), on SSRN. Here is the abstract:
premarital agreement, perhaps one of the world’s most unromantic
documents, also happens to be quite powerful and complex. Although its
most highly-publicized use has been to control post-divorce property
division, the premarital agreement’s most significant importance is in
its power to circumvent the statutory defaults governing spouses’
rights and responsibilities not only during divorce or death, but also
during marriage. However, the enforceability of premarital agreements
is subject to procedural and substantive review in the United States.
Such agreements also raise universal public policy issues with regard
to the meaning of fairness and the limits on freedom of contract. To
further understand and address these issues, this Article considers
premarital agreements in the comparative context, analyzing the
approach of the United States, as well as that of France, Germany,
Switzerland, and Poland. The resulting lessons implicate the freedom of
contract, the potential characteristics of the regulatory framework
surrounding premarital agreements, and the popularity of such
agreements among prospective spouses.